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Reagan would have backed gay marriage, daughter says [Talkback]

April 04, 2013|By Los Angeles Times Staff
  • President Ronald Reagan would have supported same-sex marriage, daughter Patti Davis told the New York Times, because of his distaste for government intrusion into private lives and his personal relationships with gays.
President Ronald Reagan would have supported same-sex marriage, daughter… (Barry Thumma / Associated…)

Would Ronald Reagan have supported gay marriage?

His daughter, Patti Davis, thinks so. She told the New York Times in an interview that, growing up in California her family had close relationships with and accepted gay couples.

“I grew up in this era where your parents’ friends were all called aunt and uncle,” Davis told the paper. “And then I had an aunt and an aunt. We saw them on holidays and other times.” She added, “We never talked about it, but I just understood that they were a couple.”

According to the New York Times: Davis "offered several reasons her father, who would have been 102 this year, would have bucked his party on the issue: his distaste for government intrusion into private lives, his Hollywood acting career and close friendship with a lesbian couple who once cared for Ms. Davis and her younger brother Ron while their parents were on a Hawaiian vacation — and slept in the Reagans’ king-size bed."

She also said that when Reagan once saw Rock Hudson kill a woman on screen, he told her the closeted gay star “would rather be kissing a man.”

Davis' comments come as the U.S. Supreme Court is deciding the fate of Proposition 8, California's ban on gay marriage.

Having a friend or family member who is gay has prompted many Americans to change their views on same-sex marriages, according to a new poll from the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.

The poll, released last week and conducted in mid-March, found that 14% of all Americans and 28% of gay-marriage supporters say they have changed their minds on the issue and decided to support gay marriage.

Roughly one-third of those told pollsters it was because they knew someone — a friend, family member or other acquaintance — who was gay. 

The poll also found that more Americans now say they support gay marriage than oppose it. Roughly 49% of Americans now say they support gay marriage, with 44% opposed.

What do you think? Share your view.

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